The second annual Well-Read Black Girl Festival took place in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn this past weekend at dynamic event space, Pioneer Works. The sunlit room bustled with the energy of the over – 400 beautiful faces. There were snacks and warm beverages, WRBG merchandise, and tons of books from Greenlight Bookstore to be purchased. But it was the main stage that garnered the most attention, Blind Seed co-founders helped attendees be present and create expectations for the day, renowned poet and author, Patricia Smith delivered a keynote address that filled spirits with affirmation and nostalgia. Legendary writer, Jacqueline Woodson graced the stage with If Beale Street Could Talk panelists, and acclaimed African American authors such as Renee Watson, Veronica Chambers, and Rita Williams-Garcia shared wisdom and knowledge across their panels. It was a day of celebration, joy, and inspiration. Check out all the beauty and gems from WRBG Fest 2018.

We belong in all spaces… Especially the literary area.” -Glory Edim, Well-Read Black Girl Founder

“Know that you have power in yourself, and for your community”- Blind Seed

“Very recently I realized the way that I am is just fine” -Carla Bruce Eddings, Writer and Publicist

Photos Courtesy of Well – Read Black Girl Instagram

On Advice to Their Younger Selves: 

Do it anyway!”- Mahogany L. Browne, Writer

Be okay with being seen.”- Renée Watson, Author

You’re safer than you think you are.” -Veronica Chambers, Author

The way I am is okay.”-Carla Bruce-Eddings, Writer

You don’t have to tell the world about the messages you’re learning about yourself –you can write something and it doesn’t need to be shared” – Bsrat Mezghebe, Writer

Photos Courtesy of Well – Read Black Girl Instagram

On Writing and Literature:

Writing is a lonely act…when they find their readers, it is their redemption” – Dawn Davis, Publisher

But I had never seen poems like this…poems about being big and black and beautiful and woman” – Renée Watson in Well-Read Black Girl by Glory Edim

Take up space, be present, be here“-Renée Watson

The beautiful thing about fiction, you’re not lying, you’re making up the details, but—you’re still telling the truth”-Bsrat Mezghebe

Photos Courtesy of Well – Read Black Girl Instagram

On the Legacy of Ntozake Shange:

 I am because she is.”-Mahogany L. Browne

The idea of black girl magic -she invented that… [She was] an example of who you could be if you were true to the core”-Glory Edim, Well-Read Black Girl Founder

If Beale Street Could Talk Panel, Jacqueline Woodson, far right  Photo Courtesy Instagram | Shane Drummond

Check out more of Well-Read Black Girl on their Instagram @wellreadblackgirl and by following hashtag #WRBGFest18.

Cover Photo by Shane Drummond